One of the most influential photographers of the 20th century, born in Kansas City, he had lived on the French Riviera since the 1960s and had a home in Castellaras, near Cannes. Duncan began working as a freelance in the 1930s, travelling across North and South America. After fighting in the second world war as a marine, he made soldiers a focus of his work while shooting for Life magazine. He became famous for his raw portraits of soldiers in Korea and Vietnam. There are no heroes in David Douglas Duncan’s images of war.
One of Duncan’s photos
“I just felt maybe the guys out there deserved being photographed just the way they are, whether they are running scared, or showing courage, or diving into a hole, or talking and laughing. And I think I did bring a sense of dignity to the battlefield,” the photographer said. Later in his career, Duncan became an outspoken anti-war advocate. Duncan also became close to Picasso after met him in 1956, gaining rare access and capturing the Spanish artist in relaxed and playful poses at his home and studio.